Strausberger Platz – Berlin’s Hipster Square

Strausberger Platz wouldn’t be Strausberger Platz without its fountain. During winter it might be possible to overlook it, but in summer it is indisputably the pounding heart of the square. Not only does the water spray meters high, but if the sunlight is coming from the right angle, you’ll see rainbows and if the  wind is blowing from the right direction, there is a mist of water floating all over the square. Yes, I’ve been observing the fountain very closely. I’ve also seen people sitting on the fountain’s edge or picnicking in the grass in front of it. A bit weird, I thought at first.

Picture 1
The most beautiful fountain in Berlin

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Furniture for new men (and women) – ideal homes for GDR citizens

The “new man” was a guiding theme in the German Democratic Republic. New men (and women) were supposed to be efficient, equal, well-educated and healthy. How to create furniture and interiors that reflected these ideals? The answer is simple: form had to follow function, practical aspects took centre stage, with no scrollwork or other gratuitous frills to distract from the piece of furniture itself. Following this premise, a simple but elegant style was created. This was the credo of furniture makers in the GDR, and many designers across the globe still adhere to the same principles.

Interieur 50er
image courtesy of katz23 –

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My own GDR museum

Let me start with some good advice: if you want to read more about Strausberger Platz/Karl-Marx-Allee in its currents state, check out this interactive Karl-Marx-Allee special of Die Zeit (only in German). It shows the many faces of the street and the way history and the present intertwine in this former heart of East-Berlin.

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Cleaning the pots and pans, then and now

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